Critics’ Picks

View of “Ultrapassado,” 2014.

View of “Ultrapassado,” 2014.

New York


BROADWAY 1602 | Uptown
5 E. 63rd Street 1ABC
June 26–August 30, 2014

The two-part exhibition “Ultrapassado” exclusively includes the work of female geometric abstractionists. Taking its name from the Portuguese term for transcending, the show in its second iteration comprises multimedia works that do just that; they go beyond the normative conventions of Rio de Janeiro–based Neo-Concretist art of the 1960s that sought to overcome its inheritance of European rationalism. Instead, work by artists Paloma Bosquê, Rosemarie Castoro, and Lydia Okumura illustrate that lyrical geometric abstraction continued and still continues to be explored in New York and Sao Paulo, broadening the scope and scale of this movement’s imposed geographical and formal limitations.

While Castoro’s drawing Y Feet, 1965, clearly addresses the jostling framework of Hélio Oiticica’s “Metaesquema,” her miniature sculptures speak to an entirely different relationship. The result in Two Walls Wired, 1976, for example, joins two facing white slabs of gesso and marble dust by bent strands of steel wire, suggesting that open-ended space rather than the conclusively hard-edged is the connective force that binds geometric abstraction. The sculpture even establishes a direct connection with a work included in the exhibition’s back room, Bosquê’s site-specific installation Ruído (Noise), 2014, which trades miniature walls for Carl Andre–like steel slabs on the floor and bent wire for threads of poured resin and buttermilk.

Okumura’s installation Different Dimensions of Reality II, 1971/2014, arranges nine white aluminum plates that seem to stagger up the gallery’s main parting wall. Upon further inspection, as the work reaches the confines of its room, the white panels turn gray, and the sculpture turns into painting.